We're out here covering Coachella with our new pals Fruttare, a yummy popsicle brand from Brazil that's newly launching in the U.S. When not OD'ing on the coconut popsicles or meeting celebs in their air-conditioned hangout tent, we've been orchestrating some Coachella Chatz, in which we ask musicians at the fest to answer our version of the Proust questionnaire. (That is, if Proust had fallen asleep in the sun for five hours outside the Gobi tent, wearing a tie-dyed onesie and holding a beer.) Below, we chat with Moby.
What song reminds you of high school?
So many of the bands playing at Coachella. It's a little weird -- it's sort of like the Coachella line-up is like my high school mixtape. There's a New Order song, "Temptation," [that reminds me of high school].
What was the first concert you ever attended?
My mom dated a lot of musicians so when I was 8, 9 and 10, she'd take me to bars where her boyfriends were playing but the first concert I went to of my own volition was Yes at Madison Square Garden in 1979 and it was so cool to be out on a school night. I was with my friend Mike and we had the worst seats but I was couldn't believe it. I was 13 years old in Madison Square Garden in New York City and it was a Thursday night and a school night. It didn't even matter if the music was good or bad -- it was just being in New York on a school night. And to get a contact high from all the people smoking pot around us.
What song makes you want to go cruising in a car, sunroof down, windows open?
It's a cliche to say this but almost anything by Led Zeppelin -- I like "Ramble On." New York has such good music and there's all this music that feels like New York and there's so much music that in a weird way feels like Los Angeles. Like pretty much anything The Doors ever recorded so you listen to The Doors or Fleetwood Mac or even The Germs or X or Mötley Crüe. For some reason, Led Zeppelin, being from Birmingham, England, for me are the quintessential L.A. band. I always think of them staying at the Hyatt House on Sunset and throwing TVs around and I think Robert Plant was L.A.-obsessed. It seems like he wrote three songs -- there's 'California' songs, 'hobbit' songs and 'anal sex' songs. And when you have a song like "Ramble On," it covers all three.
Who is the best-dressed musician of all time?
I think the obvious answer is Bryan Ferry but that's too obvious. David Bowie but that's also kind of obvious...David Sylvian from the band Japan 'cause he also inspired Duran Duran who are also well-dressed.
What are your go-to karaoke songs?
When I sing karaoke, I try to never sing the same song twice so each time I do karaoke, I try a new song. Sometimes it works and sometimes it doesn't. Once I tried to sing "My Way" and I realized that I'm really not a good singer. I sing on my records but I understand my vocal limitations and I can sing within a very limited range but there are some songs [I can't] and for some reason with "My Way," I couldn't find the note and so it was humiliating.
Justin Bieber or Taylor Swift?
I don't know enough about either one of them. What little I know of them, Taylor Swift seems marginally more interesting. I just read something about Justin Bieber punching one of his neighbors and I was like, "Maybe he's evolving into a douchey frat boy" whereas what little I know of [Taylor Swift], she seems to be kind of an oddball. Didn't she date John Mayer? Isn't he like 50 years old? That's a little weird. Far be it for me to judge but it seems vaguely inappropriate.
Have you ever dedicated a song to someone on the radio?
Yes. I was dating a woman and playing a big outdoor show in Boston for 20,000 people and it was a radio show so it was being broadcast and [the woman I was dating] was going into the hospital the next day so we called her up and I had 20,000 people wish her well but other than that, I've never dedicated a song to anyone on the radio.
Who would you rather tour with: all denim-suit Justin Timberlake or Suit and Tie Justin Timberlake?
The obvious answer is the right answer, which is all-denim 'cause the suit and tie makes sense -- he looks very nice. But the denim baffles me. It's just terrible but it's so amazing. He kind of looks like a Times Square hooker c. 1980 but also like an Eastern European cocaine dealer. None of it makes sense but in the best possible way. And the fact that he has the Levi's pocket and it's probably the strangest hat a man has ever worn -- that denim cowboy hat. Ideally someone would tailor the denim suit to make it a little tighter.